Little Saints

A Catholic Preschool Program with Classical Disciplines
Book cover: 'Little Saints: A Catholic Preschool Program with Classical Disciplines'
Cynthia Blum
Grade / Age level: 

I'm just thrilled with it the Little Saints program on my first overview. The subtitle of the book is "A Catholic Preschool Program with Classical Disciplines", and it is just what I wanted last year! I'm going to try it with my soon-to-be-3 year old and my Kindergartner this year.

Last year, I purchased one of the Five in a Row (FIAR) volumes, but FIAR just didn't mesh well with our gang. My 4 year old (who is the size of an 8 year old and looks like a meat packer, but is really an "artsy" teddy bear at present) was bored by re-reading the same book for a week, and he wasn't too thrilled with the question/answer/research type of work. He wanted to MAKE things and read MORE books...sounds like his mama!

The Little Saints program is *not* a phonics or math or "academic" preschool program, although phonics and handwriting and basic math information is included. It is heavily based in literature, religion, and the arts. I'm overwhelmed as it is *just* what I would have wanted to do had I the proper background....and a dozen years of free time.

The program is laid out by month, with "themes" for each week during the months of August through May. The 40 themes are those typical of preschool: seasons, family life, animals, senses, people around the world, and so on. Each theme is organized into a 3-day school week, with many ideas of activities for that day.

Every "day" has notes for the teacher as to the basic goal of the day, a short quote from the Bible (which I will be using for copywork for my Kindergartner), storytime, nursery rhymes, poetry, story-telling and finger plays (memory work), songs and circle games, at least one learning game, and an art project. The first pages of each week/theme clearly lays out for the busy parent: exactly what materials are needed for each game and each project, a listing of the skills being worked on that week, a listing of correlated classical music for music appreciation, and a long listing of picture books on the theme of the week. Most of the titles of the picture books are familiar to me, so they are either "classics" or easily found at the library.

The appendices include the text of the rhymes and finger plays and songs. The author notes that if you repeat the program for a second year that you will notice a considerable difference between a 3 year old child and a 4 year old child.

In short, I'm just thrilled with this program.

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